Managed services

The first conference on Managed Services in India came together in Delhi last Friday at the underwhelming Hotel Lalit in Connaught Place.   I had to be there – not least because I have several investment and strategic interests in the sector (NetMagic, Colt, etc.)

Summary learnings from the show (since some of you asked about my thoughts via LinkedIn:

  • The “Managed Services” show was hijacked by a VAS and Telecom agenda.  Not least because the primary sponsor, Comviva, formerly called Bharti Telesoft used the show to launch its new name.  Comviva is one of the largest providers of so called value added services (VAS) to mobile operators and their services range from outsourcing billling functions to managing roaming and ringtones and gaming.
  • The morning keynote was followed by a couple of panels primarily focused on the telecom operators imperatives: why outsource?  To convert capex to opex?  To reduce opex?  Been there done that; but VAS vendors can also provide them new revenue opportunities.
  • Some of us with a more enterprise-centric view of managed services were hanging on until the last session when a couple of operators finally got around to what seems to be a totally new idea to them: managed connectivity, managed hosting, managed security, managed routers, etc. etc.  The party broke after a few insipid questions and answers.

Despite the negativity in my coverage of the show, I think this was a good starting point.  There was a fair representation from IT services firms, operators’ enterprise solutions crews, and managed services focused startups.   I am hoping that somebody does a better job putting together a good show on managed services.  The market and solutions both exist and are thriving here even if this show missed them completely.

While I am on the topic, NetMagic has been getting a lot of press this week – they launched the first cloud computing offering in India.  To quote the story: “While there are various definitions of cloud computing given by various vendors, what it basically entails is the provision of every element of IT infrastructure available as an on-demand service, including operating systems, applications, storage, servers, appliances and workflow management.”


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